The Daves Next Door
By Will Carver
Darkly thought-provoking as Will Carver’s books are; The Daves Next Door is another highly unique, shockingly plausible thriller. Find out more below in the blurb and the rest of my review below, as well as a bit about the author. Thanks first to Orenda Books and Random T. Tours for a spot on the blog tour to review and for a copy of the book.
A disillusioned nurse suddenly learns how to care.
An injured young sportsman wakes up find that he can see only in black and white.
A desperate old widower takes too many pills and believes that two angels have arrived to usher him through purgatory.
Two agoraphobic men called Dave share the symptoms of a brain tumour, and frequently waken their neighbour with their ongoing rows.
Separate lives, running in parallel, destined to collide and then explode.
Like the suicide bomber, riding the Circle Line, day after day, waiting for the right time to detonate, waiting for answers to his questions: Am I God? Am I dead? Will I blow up this train?
Shocking, intensely emotive and wildly original, Will Carver’s The Daves Next Door is an explosive existential thriller and a piercing examination of what it means to be human … or not.
The events within the book, as it says near the start, are pretty close to the truth, but are actual fictional. There are many stories in the universe, big ones and small ones and this is shown within this book and majestically points this out in a captivating way, right from the prologue. The book isn’t really about that terrorist attack at all, it’s about insights and observations of society. It isn’t your typical thriller with such characters as is within the blurb, with death, blood, guts and gore. It’s more a cerebral, psychological thriller; which is where Will Carver’s books tend to settle in.
This book packs a punch! Will Carver and his bravery of saying things how they are in excellent story-telling that captivates until the very end, meaning for many a late night reading one of his books. What Will Carver expertly does is shows the consequence and the aftermath of an event. The events are explosively shocking! People who didn’t initially know each other now have a connection. He has taken a different angle starting with the prologue and then ingeniously finishes the prologue on a question, so how can you not be enticed to read on?
Then the book takes readers to the Daves. They are terribly unwell, both psychologically and physically, but there is some unexpected optimism in tone at certain times.
The book shows a little about being in a life or death scenario and the human condition. There’s an old man and the Daves and a young sportsman who have of course been in better ways in their health and life. There’s also Vashiti, the nurse, who questions her ability to care, whether she actually does care and then re-learns this. There’s also a could be terrorist and what thoughts go on. There is also, intriguingly, some chapters called God? Terrorist? Narrator? – all 3 mentioned in the title, before splitting off a bit. It’s a very unique book and this poses a very different set of questions, compared to the Daves or the nurse.
There’s so much that is thought-provoking that makes you see things in different ways as the book takes readers on a journey into the human psyche. This is something Will Carver does rather expertly and then fictionalises it just enough to create an entrancing, yet very plausible story that shows elements of society and perhaps shows parts in a true light. He finds all the darker, often hidden in plain sight corners and reflects them back to the reader.
There are elements of themes and writing style that are reminiscent of Nothing Important Happened Today and Hinton Hollow Death Trip, but it is perfectly okay not to have read these first as The Daves Next Door is standalone. They all shine a light in the most original ways on society in storytelling that I certainly hadn’t seen before. So, if you need something to read that is entirely new, check out Will Carver’s books.
The Daves Next Door is compulsive and immersive reading. Like his other books, it provides great insight into the world and people’s minds, parts that aren’t particularly talked about, but are there, quietly existing amongst the earth today. Will Carver takes people out of the everyday thoughts and observations and gives a different, but still truthful, perspective on society. It’s yet another must read book. I know, I know, I’ve said this about every single book by Will Carver that I have read and reviewed, which is almost all of them, but it isn’t something I say lightly. Books by him go deep into your soul, are unforgettable and could, if everyone read them, have people having a deeper understanding, a deeper insight and perspective into society as well as thinking about their own lives, all in what are works of fiction, but a white-knuckle journey, close to the truth.
About The Author
Will Carver is the international bestselling author of the January David series. He spent his early years in Germany, but returned to the UK at age eleven, when his sporting career took off. He turned down a professional rugby contract to study theatre and television at King Alfred’s, Winchester, where he set up a successful theatre company. He currently runs his own fitness and nutrition company, and lives in Reading with his two children. Will’s latest title published by Orenda Books, The Beresford is out in July. His previous title Hinton Hollow Death Trip was longlisted for the Not the Booker Prize, while Nothing Important Happened Today was
longlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. Good
Samaritans was book of the year in Guardian, Telegraph and Daily Express, and hit number one on the ebook charts.